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Starting from 1869, a short history of rugby in Yorkshire

Over the coming months will we be delving into the history of rugby in Yorkshire thanks to Yorkshire RFU Archivist Richard Lowther.

As our guest blogger, Richard will take you on a trip down memory lane each month as he delves into the history of the growth of the game in the County.  From its very origins, to famous County rivalries to the people behind it all, you’ll learn what makes Yorkshire RFU so vibrant and diverse. 

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The 1970s

New rugby club names were still appearing in the County handbook but not in the numbers that had been seen in the 1950s and 1960s. The number of affiliated members…

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The 1960s

The decade began with one hundred and eleven clubs listed in the County handbook as affiliated members. Eleven of the clubs were RAF Bases that in 1960 were mainly playing…

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A History of Yorkshire Cup: Part 3 – Between the Wars

Bob Oakes, Yorkshire's legendary secretary, worked tirelessly to restart the game across the County after the carnage of the First World War. Twenty-five clubs were stirred into life by the…

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Joseph Goodworth Hudson: Yorkshire’s premier organiser

Joseph Goodworth Hudson was amongst the pioneers of rugby within Yorkshire. In 1864, aged approx. 25, he replied to an advertisement in the Leeds newspapers asking for footballers to meet…

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Arthur Edward Hudson: A Yorkshire Pioneer

Rugby in Yorkshire owes a great deal to the early endeavours of Arthur Edward Hudson.  Born in Leeds in July 1854, Hudson was a pioneer in the early development of…

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Missionary workers: Yorkshire Wanderers

Following the aftermath of the 1895 schism, the Yorkshire RFU were at low ebb.  Membership of the union had declined from approx. 150 clubs to just into low double figures…

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Hacking the Rose bush: The early ‘Roses’ games

The enmity between Yorkshire and Lancashire can be traced back to the ‘War of the Roses’ (1455-1487). The rivalry resumed in 1849 with the first First class cricket match between…

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